Thursday, October 27, 2005

The War Crimes Act of 1996: Bush, Cheney and the Boys could be Indicted under US Law

The War Crimes Act of 1996, a federal statute set forth at 18 U.S.C. § 2441, makes it a federal crime for any U.S. national, whether military or civilian, to violate the Geneva Convention by engaging in murder, torture, or inhuman treatment.

The statute applies not only to those who carry out the acts, but also to those who ORDER IT, know about it, or fail to take steps to stop it. The statute applies to everyone, no matter how high and mighty.

18 U.S.C. § 2441 has no statute of limitations, which means that a war crimes complaint can be filed at any time.

The penalty may be life imprisonment or -- if a single prisoner dies due to torture -- death. Given that there are numerous, documented cases of prisoners being tortured to death by U.S. soldiers in both Iraq and Afghanistan (see for example this report), that means that the death penalty would be appropriate for anyone found guilty of carrying out, ordering, or sanctioning such conduct.

The general in charge of the notorious Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq stated this week that Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and other top administration officials ORDERED that inhuman treatment and torture be conducted as part of a deliberate strategy. This confirms what the Pullitzer prize-winning reporter who uncovered the Iraq prison torture scandal and the Mai Lai massacre in Vietnam previously wrote.

Indeed, an FBI email declassified in December 2004 states that Bush signed an Executive Order authorizing torture (here is the list of documents obtained through a freedom of information act request, and take a close look, for example, at this one, which mentions the "executive order").

An expert on Constitutional law said that only Bush could have authorized the torture which has occurred.

It has also recently come out that, even after the torture at Abu Ghraib hit the news, torture still continues at that prison and, indeed, the U.S. is still torturing people worldwide. Even to the casual observer, it is obvious that the administration has no plans to stop, but has instead been working tirelessly to make it easier to carry out torture in the future.

Let's recap. We now know that torture in Iraq was ordered by top officials, and that torture is continuing, notwithstanding the administration's claims that it was only "a couple of bad apples" that were responsible for Abu Ghraib. Making a potential prosecutor's job easier, U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales wrote a memo in January 2002 to President Bush saying that America should opt out of the Geneva Convention because top officials have to worry about prosecutions under 18 U.S.C. § 2441. By attempting to sidestep the Geneva Convention, Gonzales created a document trail that can be used to prove that top administration officials knowingly created a policy of torturing prisoners, and that such a policy could reasonably have been expected to result in the death of some prisoners.

The U.S. did opt out of the Geneva Convention for the Afghanistan war, but we never opted out of the Geneva Convention for Iraq. Indeed, President Bush has repeatedly stated that Geneva applies in Iraq (although he has since claimed that foreign fighters captured in Iraq are not covered). Thus, there would be very little room for fancy footwork by defense lawyers in a prosecution against top officials concerning torture in Iraq.

And to the extent that claims that the U.S. has sent prisoners to other countries for the express purpose of being tortured are true, violation of the war crimes act by the highest officials of our country would be even clearer. For who else but Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and other top officials would have the ability to authorize such flights? How could such a program be undertaken without their knowledge? And how could such a program be anything but the intentional "ordering" of torture, or at least "knowing about it" and "failing to take steps to stop it"?

The Abu Ghraib general's recent statements about torture coming from the top and the existence of the "ghost flights" are important pieces of evidence for convicting Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Gonzales, and a host of other top administration officials for violation of the War Crimes Act of 1996. Upon conviction, they could be sentenced to life in prison, or even death.

Additionally, violation of the war crimes act almost certainly constitutes a "high crime or misdemeanor" which would allow impeachment of such officials.

Postscript: Since this essay was written, new information has come out about torture and other potential violations of the Geneva Convention. The former director of the CIA accused Cheney of overseeing torture policies. Colin Powell's former chief of staff stated that Dick Cheney is guilty of war crimes. Some of the torturers themselves have come forward to confess their actions (see also this article; see also this article, this one, this one, and finally this one). Of course, the U.S. has now admitted waterboarding, and admitted that it is illegal.

It was also revealed that the U.S. is holding prisoners at gulags in Europe.

In addition, before attacking Falluja, the marines allegedly stopped men "of fighting age" from leaving. The marines also levelled thousands of buildings, illegally denied access to the Iraqi Red Crescent and, according to the UN's special rapporteur, used "hunger and deprivation of water as a weapon of war against the civilian population".

And the U.S. military's use of white phosphorus and also napalm as weapons in Iraq has been exposed (see also this essay).

These facts further strengthen the case that high level officials committed war crimes. Indeed, even the lawyers and other people who aided in the effort may be war criminals; see also this article , this one, and this press release.


11 comments

Monday, October 24, 2005

Campaign: New York Times and 9/11

Dear 9/11 Activists,

Join the nationwide campaign to pressure the New York Times to print the truth about 9/11 NOW. The Times is under fire for letting Judith Miller work as a member of the White House Iraq Group to spread disinformation, and then covering up Miller's role and refusing to fire her. It has become obvious to fair-minded observers that the Times has been part of the Iraq disinformation campaign.

NOW is the time to contact the Times, to urge the Times to "step up to the plate" on 9/11 as part of its need to "repair its reputation" after the Miller scandal.

Please copy the letter below (you're welcome to embellish on it if you want, and anger is ok – but please remain respectful).

Fax it to the Times at (212) 556-7614, and please also email the letter to public@nytimes.com.

* * *

Arthur Sulzberger, Jr., Publisher
Janet L. Robinson, CEO
Leonard P. Forman, CFO
Scott Heekin-Canedy, President
Bill Keller, Executive Editor
Jill Abramson, Managing Editor
John M. Geddes, Managing Editor
RW Apple, Chief Correspondent
Bernard Gwertzman, Editor (Times on Web)
Carl Lavin, News Editor
Gustave Niebuhr, Religion Reporter
Ray Bonner, Investigative Correspondent
Byron Calame, Public Editor
The New York Times
229 West 43rd St.
New York, NY 10036-3959
SENT VIA FACSIMILE: (212) 556-7614

RE: Judith Miller and 9/11

Ladies and Gentlemen,

As the nation’s leading paper, the New York Times has the resources and talent to investigate stories of significance. Executive editor Bill Keller's October 21, 2005, email, stated that the Jayson Blair mini-scandal caused the Times to delay for a year its addressing the paper's faulty coverage concerning Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction. See http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/national/1152AP_Keller_Text.html. I understand the political pressures facing the Times. However, the Jayson Blair issue was only an internal issue affecting solely the Times, while WMD coverage is of worldwide national security, military, and political significance.

More importantly, the Blair incident occurred long after September 11, 2001, and yet the times has NEVER run a SINGLE story accurately reporting what happened on that terrible day.

Mr. Keller also stated “it is excruciating to withhold information of value to our readers”. While this statement applied to WMD and Iraq, it is equally true of 9/11.

On October 15th, renowned theologian Dr. David Ray Griffin called on the Times to disclose previously withheld information about 9/11. Dr. Griffin stated:

"In light of this situation and the facts discussed in this lecture---as well as dozens of more problems in the official account of 9/11 discussed elsewhere---I call on the New York Times to take the lead in finally exposing to the American people and the world the truth about 9/11. Taking the lead on such a story will, of course, involve enormous risks. But if there is any news organization with the power, the prestige, and the credibility to break this story, it is the Times. It performed yeoman service in getting the 9/11 oral histories released. But now the welfare of our republic and perhaps even the survival of our civilization depend on getting the truth about 9/11 exposed. I am calling on the Times to rise to the occasion."

See http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=viewArticle&code=20051021&articleId=1129

Dr. Griffin is not the only religious leader calling for accurate and full reporting on 9/11. Other endorsers include, for example:

Rev. George Pixley, retired Baptist minister and Professor of Biblical Studies (Ph.D. University of Chicago);

Rev. David E. Roy, Ph.D.;

Rosemary Radford Ruether, Carpenter Professor of Theology, Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, CA;

Kent Mayfield, Unitarian Minister;

Amir Salih Erschen, Madison Muslim Dawa Circle; and

Dr. James Goulding, Adjunct Member of Religious Studies Faculty at Edgewood College and Professor of Religion Emeritus at MacMurray College in Jacksonville, Illinois.

See http://mujca.com/endorsers.htm.

And lest you think this is a religious issue, the following high-ranking current and former U.S. Government officials have also called for the truth about 9/11 to be disclosed:

Current U.S. congresswoman, Cynthia McKinney;

Former chief economist for the Department of Labor under George W. Bush, who was also director of the Criminal Justice Center at the National Center for Policy Analysis, Morgan Reynolds;

Former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury under President Reagan, listed by Who’s Who in America as one of the 1,000 most influential political thinkers in the world, Paul Craig Roberts;

Former director of the U.S. "Star Wars" space defense program in both Republican and Democratic administrations, who was a senior air force colonel who flew 101 combat missions (who is also a Catholic Archbishop), Dr. Robert M. Bowman;

Former senior CIA analyst, who prepared and presented Presidential Daily Briefs and served as a high-level analyst for several presidents, Ray McGovern;

Former Deputy Secretary for Intelligence and Warning under Nixon, Ford, and Carter, Morton Goulder;

Former US Ambassador and Chief of Mission to Iraq, and Former US Department of State Foreign Service Officer, Edward L. Peck;

Former Ambassador Joseph Wilson; and

Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg, as well as a who's who of liberals, conservatives and independents.

See http://911proof.com/

Clearly, 9/11 is a story of national significance and importance.

But perhaps the Times thought that its readers would not be INTERESTED in learning the true facts of 9/11? This argument is belittled by the fact that a poll by Zogby International, the well-known polling organization, found that HALF of New Yorkers believe that U.S. leaders "had foreknowledge of impending 9-11 attacks and 'Consciously Failed' to act" and that 66% of respondents wanted a new probe of unanswered questions concerning 9/11. See http://www.zogby.com/search/ReadNews.dbm?ID=855

We would like to thank the Times for successfully fighting to make the transcripts from 9/11 emergency responders public, and congratulate the Times on its court victory which secured such document release.

However, we would strongly caution the Times to consider that its non-coverage of the true facts of what occurred on 9/11 may dwarf the fallout from the WMD issue.

The Times is losing readers every day to weblogs (or "blogs") because the best blogs are not “withhold[ing] information of value to [their] readers,” but are double checking sources and putting all of the credible information out, oftentimes YEARS in advance of the Times. As just two examples, www.WhatReallyHappened.com and www.Truthout.com ran now-verified stories showing that the Niger yellowcake document was a forgery and that there were no WMDs in Iraq months BEFORE the war started.

If the TIMES does not immediately run articles discussing the truth of 9/11, as called for by Dr. Griffin and a multitude of other religious and political leaders, the Times will never recover the credibility it lost through the Judith Miller affair.

Thank you for thoughtfully considering the demand contained in this letter. If you investigate the truth about 9/11 and Iraq now, the Times may have a chance to recover its credibility. If not, the Times will no longer be the nation's "paper of record", but may instead end up as a footnote in history.

Thank You in Advance,

{Your name here}


3 comments

Monday, October 17, 2005

America Cannot Survive Another False Flag Attack

False flag terror -- that is, state-sponsored terrorism, blamed on the "bad guys" of choice -- is getting unprecedented coverage from current and former government employees and mainstream news sources:

On Monday, a retired 27-year CIA analyst who prepared and presented Presidential Daily Briefs and served as a high-level analyst for several presidents, stated that if there was another major attack in the U.S., it would lead to martial law. He went on to say:

"We have to be careful, if somebody does this kind of provocation, big violent explosions of some kind, we have to not take the word of the masters there in Washington that this was some terrorist event because it could well be a provocation allowing them, or seemingly to allow them to get what they want."

The former CIA analyst would not put it past the government to "play fast and loose" with terror alerts and warnings and even events themselves in order to rally people behind the flag


On October 12, 2005, Australia's largest newspaper quoted the well-respected former Indonesian president as saying that the government had a role in the Bali bombings

On the same day, newsman Keith Olbermann listed numerous instances in which the administration had issued terror alerts based on scant intelligence in order to rally people around the flag when the administration was suffering in the polls, which is a step towards acknowledging that the "war on terror" is not what the government claims it is

On October 11th, current U.S. Congressman Ron Paul stated that the government "is determined to have martial law", and that the government is hoping to get the people "fearful enough that they will accept the man on the white horse"

Last month, a member of Parliament stated that "there is a very real danger" that the American government will stage a false flag terror attack in order to justify war against Iran and to gain complete control domestically

And Americans dressed as Arabs have apparently been setting off car bombs in Iraq (apparently, when it was discovered that some of the cars used in Iraqi bombings recently came from the U.S., the cover story became American cars were involved in car bombings only because they had recently beenstolen from the U.S. and then shipped to Iraq -- but does it make senes that Iraqi insurgents would steal cars in the U.S. and ship them all the way to Iraq?)

Similarly, Britain's false flag attacks in Basra made the news in September. And the press has acknowledged that the death of the lead investigator into the Basra incident was mysterious, which may keep the Basra story alive even longer.

The investigation and potential indictments regarding the CIA leak scandal are important, especially if they widen to include the administration's intentional lies to get us into war.

But the growing discussion of false flag operations by the U.S. and its allies is at least as important. Indeed, if indictments or articles of impeachment are issued against top officials, a false flag attack would cause a suspension of the constitution in whole or in part, in which case such criminal and impeachment proceedings would likely be suspended. Therefore, whether or not Patrick Fitzgerald issues indictments, and whether or not Bush, Cheney and the gang are indicted or impeached, the need to spread the truth about false flag operations has never been greater; perhaps, given the recent statements on this issue, the opportunity has never been greater.

Please pressure Congress, the media, and those who don't have internet access to learn about this issue. It is literally now or never.

America cannot survive another false flag attack.

Postscript: the Former UN Weapons Inspector who stated before the Iraq war started that there were no weapons of mass destruction is now saying that he would not rule out staged government terror by the U.S. government. And Daniel Ellsberg, the famous Pentagon Papers whistleblower, is now saying the same thing. Moreover, a GOP memo allegedly touts a new terror attack as a way to reverse the party's decline.


6 comments

Friday, October 14, 2005

Below the Belt

There is substantial evidence that explosions occurred well BELOW the areas impacted by the planes hitting the Twin Towers on 9/11. Indeed, according to some witnesses, some of these explosions occurred before the plane even hit the building:

Prior to Plane Hit

9/11 hero, who was the last person out of the north tower, said that there was a massive explosion in the North Tower BEFORE the plane hit (see also this interview and also this interview)

Assistant Chief Engineer at the World Trade Center arrived on the 38th floor of the North Tower before the plane hit, got out of the elevator, and about 50 feet down the hallway, he heard a loud explosion and was lifted into the air. "I can't even tell you how far I traveled," he recalled. When he landed, people were already coming out of their offices into the hallway . . .Upon reaching the 43rd floor, "there were patches of ceiling that was just down on the floor, water pipes were broken, water was gushing like a brook or river that was just running down the corridor of the machine room."

Maintenance worker who worked in the basement of north tower witnessed an explosion in the basement at around the same time the plane hit far above

Two other eyewitnesses working in the Twin Towers witnesssed explosions in the basement at about the same time the plane hit

Phenomena Wholly Inconsistent with Official Story

Stationary engineer who worked in world trade center one described tremendous damage in the basement of the building more consistent in nature and timing with a bomb than with damage from jet fuel: "'There was nothing there but rubble . . . We're talking about a 50 ton hydraulic press—gone!'. . . They then went to the parking garage, but found that it was also gone. Then on the B level, they found that a steel-and-concrete fire door, which weighed about 300 pounds, was wrinkled up 'like a piece of aluminum foil.' Having seen similar things after the terrorist attack in 1993, [he] was convinced that a bomb had gone off."

NYC firefighter stated “It actually gave at a lower floor, not the floor where the plane hit. . . [W]e originally had thought there was like an internal detonation, explosives, because it went in succession, boom, boom, boom, boom, and then the tower came down.”

Firefighter said "this, huge incredible force of wind and debris actually came UP the stairs, knocked my helmet off, knocked me to the ground"

Similarly, employee of an insurance company in south tower heard an explosion from BELOW the impact of the airplane, an "exploding sound" shook the building, a tornado of hot air, smoke and ceiling tiles and bits of drywall came flying UP the stairwell, and the wall split from the bottom UP

Firefighter stated "my lieutenant said he looked down at the first floor, and he could see the first floor of the south tower like exploding out" (page 5; Google's web version is here)

Firefighter said "I was distracted by a large explosion from the south tower and it seemed like fire was shooting out a couple of hundred feet in each direction, then all of a sudden the top of the tower started coming down in a pancake . . . It appeared somewhere below [the area where the plane had hit]. Maybe twenty floors below the impact area of the plane" (pages 3 & 4)

A fire department batallion chief stated "it actually looked -- the lowest floor of fire in the south tower actually looked like someone had planted explosives around it because the whole bottom I could see (redacted) I could see two sides of it and the other side, it just looked like that floor blew out" (what was in the redacted portion?)

CBS News reporter stated "All of a sudden I heard a roar and I saw one of the towers blow ... I saw from street level as though it exploded up, a giant rolling ball of flame...". (same reporter stated "I hear simultaneously this roar and see what appears to be a gigantic fireball rising up at ground level . . . I remember seeing this giant ball of fire come out of the earth as I heard this roar" (pages 119 & 239))

An eyewitness reported a large explosion at ground level right before the collapse of the North Tower

Police Officer described events which occurred inside Tower One after the second plane hit and well before that tower collapsed: "We went back up to the sixth floor . . . . Then there was an eerie silence and it was like you knew something was going to happen. There just seemed to be one explosion after another. I was separated from the guys from the bridge . . . by another explosion, massive again, sucking the air out of your lungs and then just a wind more intense this time with larger pieces of debris flying." (pages 94 & 95, which is page 2 & 3 of a hand-written memorandum)

BBC reporter stated "Then, an hour later, we had that big explosion, from much much lower [well below the plane impact]. I don't know what on earth caused that".

Firefighter describes elevators "blown off the hinges" which only went to lower floors (page 7)(Note: this statement about the elevators still needs to be verified)

Other Evidence of Explosions Well Below the Area of Plane Impact

A janitor witnessed explosions in the sub-basement

A carpenter witnessed explosions in the sub-basement

A Port Authority Police Department officer, who was intimately familiar with the World Trade Center from his years of police duties patrolling there, described how the hallway began to shudder as a "terrible deafening roar" swept over him, then a giant fireball exploded in the street seconds before the south tower collapsed

Firefighters discovered that the lobby of one of the twin towers suffered explosive damage with blown-out windows

Firefighter stated "the Maydays started coming in to vacate the north tower . . . we started going down. At that point, we proceeded down . . . Made it down to the lobby. There were about maybe 30 firefighters that were with us. Made it to the lobby, and the lobby was like a war zone. All the windows were blown out, and the command post wasn't there. We made it to the corner of West and Vesey when the building came down." (pages 5 & 6)

A WTC survivor said "We get to the 8th floor. Big Explosion. Blew us back into the eighth floor."

Another survivor experienced an explosion in the mezzanine of the tower

Another survivor experienced an explosion in the lobby

World trade center employee stated "the bottom of our building was blown out"

Paramedic "heard ground level explosions" (page 29)

A police report states World Trade Center "Police Desk reporting an explosion on the lower level" 8 minutes after plane crash (page 17, which is page 2 of the Chronological Report of the WTC Radio Transmissions on 9/11/01)

Construction worker discusses explosions in the sub-basement of tower 1; same worker talks about explosions in the basements of tower 2

See also witness statements here

How could the fire damage from airplanes or their jet fuel have caused such extensive explosions over so many floors over such a long timeframe below the airplane impacts? Do you remember that most of the fuel spilled outside of the towers in those dramatic fireballs, and the rest supposedly lit the paper, rugs and other office contents of the twin towers on fire?

Given these facts, how could fires or jet fuel have caused the events described above by credible eyewitnesses?



19 comments

What's With the Mid-Air Dust Clouds?

Compare this footage of a known controlled demolition

And this footage of a controlled demolition

With this footage of the start of the collapse of tower 1

And these photos showing the pulverization of the world trade centers in mid-air into massive dust clouds

Any questions?


1 comments

Monday, October 10, 2005

Another 9/11 Smoking Gun?

Emergency personnel tapes released in August contain the following statements concerning "flashes" in the world trade centers prior to their collapse:

The captain of emergency medical services said "somewhere around the middle of the world trade center there was this orange and red flash coming out ... initially it was just one flash then this flash just kept popping all the way around the building and that building had started to explode ... and with each popping sound it was initially an orange and then red flash came out of the building and then it would just go all around the building on both sides ... as far as could see these popping sounds and the explosions were getting bigger going both up and down and then all around the building" (page 15 -- pdf file; Google's web version is here)

Similiarly, the Assistant Fire Commissioner stated I thought . . . before . . . No. 2 came down, that I saw low-level flashes. . . . I . . . saw a flash flash flash . . . [at] the lower level of the building. You know like when they . . . blow up a building. . . ?” . In the same statement, the Assistant Commissioner recounts how a lieutenant firefighter he spoke with independently verified the flashes.

Compare these two videos from a leading controlled demolition company:

Can you see orange flashes all over the near-side of this building in this authenticated video of a controlled demolition?

Do you see orange flashes at the base of this building in this demolition video by the same demolition company? (both videos are posted at the "World Records" section of Controlled Demolition's website)

Does the above-described evidence tend to prove that controlled demolition explosives were used in the twin towers? Or could a series of orange and red flashes accompanied by popping sounds immediately prior to the collapse of the towers have been caused by something else?


62 comments

Friday, October 07, 2005

Save Important 9/11 Information

Even today, 22% of all Americans have never used the internet. And while the readership of web news sources is dramatically increasing, and the mainstream media is quickly losing readers and credibility, many Americans who do have web access still prefer to get their news from old-school sources.

The powers-that-be are also trying to shut down free speech on the web, since it challenges their "official" stories. See for example these headlines.

Luckily, there are now several free programs which allow you to download the contents of an entire website (1). By downloading the info from important sites, you will help to preserve the evidence. For example, if alot of us download a key document, and then the government tried to "disappear" the document, enough of us would have it on our computers that we could prove the document exists.

You can also copy the info onto a CD, after you have downloaded it, and pass the CD on to others who aren't web-savvy or who still get their news from the mainstream media.

If you set the downloading program to grab external links, you will also download the actual linked web pages and linked multimedia files. In other words, you would then be downloading and saving the materials linked by the website you are caching (2).

Some software even allows you to reproduce the look and feel of the website on a CD, including the linked pages, so that the CD-user doesn't even have to access the web to read all of the linked materials. So you can give CDs to people who won't spend the time to look at the site on the internet. And in the privacy of their own (or their library's) computer, they can view the information for themselves.

(1) If you don't already know about this kind of software, I have found the free Httrack Website Copier and its free companion software, ProxyHTTrack, to be effective.

(2) Because some of these website materials or linked-to materials may be copyrighted, you should contact the copyright owners to get their permission before copying the material.


0 comments